How to apply
Our jobs are listed on the My Job Scotland recruitment website. All online applications are made through the My Job Scotland website.
All applications will be acknowledged by email.
If you are successful in your application for a position within South Ayrshire Council, you will be
invited by e-mail to attend a face to face interview. This may also be accompanied by some other form
of assessment, the details of which will also be included within the e-mail.
Competency based interview
At South Ayrshire Council we use competency based interviews as a part of our recruitment process. A
competency based interview is one where the candidate is assessed on set of competencies. The questions
will be focused on asking the candidate how they responded to situations in the past as this is the
most likely indicator of how they will perform in the future. A competency based interview eliminates
the possibility of a subjective or biased assessment; instead a method of investigative questioning
is used to draw from the candidate what they actually did, said, and thought in a situation.
A competency is defined by ACAS as a behaviour that employees must have, or must acquire, to input into
a situation in order to achieve high levels of performance.
Within South Ayrshire Council we have 4 core competencies:
- Achieving results through personal effectiveness
- Working with others
- Customer service excellence
At the interview you will be asked at least one question from each of these core competencies and
your answer will be marked against the relevant competency for the level of the position applied
Find out more about the Competency Framework
for jobs with the Council.
It is important to remember when answering competency based interview questions that you are being
asked to provide specific examples that demonstrate how you have used your skills in the past. When
providing these examples you may find it useful to structure your answer using the ‘STAR’ approach:
- Situation – In what context did you show these skills?
- Task – What was your role or responsibility?
- Action – What was it that you did?
- Result – What was the outcome?
This involves candidates completing a range of activities related to the competencies for the job.
Activities could include a teamwork exercise, an in-tray exercise, a case study or preparation and
delivery of a presentation (some specific details are provided below). These will normally always be
used together with a competency based interview.
Other selection methods
In addition to a competency based interview, the following forms of selection may also be used:
As part of the recruitment process it is common for candidates to be asked to complete an in-tray
exercise. This will be a work based scenario that will assess practical aspects of the job,
such as problem solving and deciding on the appropriate course of action.
Personality profiles (psychometric tests)
This will take the format of a questionnaire that the candidate will have to complete before the
interview. Feedback will be given to the candidate and this will be used in conjunction with
other recruitment methods listed here as part of the recruitment and selection process.
Where the post involves practical skills e.g. word processing or telephone techniques, ability
tests will be used.